Art-on-a-Chip: Preserving Microfluidic Chips for Visualization and Permanent Display

Rebecca Soffe, Albert J. Mach, Sevgi Onal, Volker Nock, Luke P. Lee, J. Tanner Nevill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

“After a certain high level of technical skill is achieved, science and art tend to coalesce in aesthetics, plasticity, and form. The greatest scientists are always artists as well.” said Albert Einstein. Currently, photographic images bridge the gap between microfluidic/lab-on-a-chip devices and art. However, the microfluidic chip itself should be a form of art. Here, novel vibrant epoxy dyes are presented in combination with a simple process to fill and preserve microfluidic chips, to produce microfluidic art or art-on-a-chip. In addition, this process can be used to produce epoxy dye patterned substrates that preserve the geometry of the microfluidic channels—height within 10% of the mold master. This simple approach for preserving microfluidic chips with vibrant, colorful, and long-lasting epoxy dyes creates microfluidic chips that can easily be visualized and photographed repeatedly, for at least 11 years, and hence enabling researchers to showcase their microfluidic chips to potential graduate students, investors, and collaborators.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2002035
JournalSmall
Volume16
Issue number34
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
A.J.M., J.T.N., and L.P.L. acknowledge the Intel Scholars Program. The authors acknowledge Dan Malleo for imaging the microfluidic Golden Gate Bridge and integrated microfluidic cell culture and lysis on a chip. R.S. thanks the New Zealand National Science Challenge–Science for Technological Innovation for a Postdoctoral Fellowship. S.O. thanks the MacDiarmid Institute for a Ph.D. Scholarship. R.S., S.O., and V.N. thank Helen Devereux and Gary Turner for technical assistance in the University of Canterbury Nanofabrication Laboratory.

Funding Information:
A.J.M., J.T.N., and L.P.L. acknowledge the Intel Scholars Program. The authors acknowledge Dan Malleo for imaging the microfluidic Golden Gate Bridge and integrated microfluidic cell culture and lysis on a chip. R.S. thanks the New Zealand National Science Challenge–Science for Technological Innovation for a Postdoctoral Fellowship. S.O. thanks the MacDiarmid Institute for a Ph.D. Scholarship. R.S., S.O., and V.N. thank Helen Devereux and Gary Turner for technical assistance in the University of Canterbury Nanofabrication Laboratory.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim

Keywords

  • communication
  • epoxy dye
  • lab-on-a-chip
  • microfabrication
  • replica molding

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